In this season of COVID-19, people are forced to start finding new ways to maintain time-honored traditions. Already many have lost the opportunity to walk in graduations, celebrate summer weddings, or come together to share a cake over a child’s birthday. As rates of the pandemic continue to rise, it is time to consider more seriously how we can celebrate life’s milestones safely. The digital era has come into its own during this pandemic. Zoom and Skype are hosting weddings and jury trials. Companies are learning how to operate with staff who all work remotely. As more of the industry around us adopt digital options, what are some ways for us to leverage technology when hosting parties and holding celebrations during COVID-19?
For starters, consider sending online invitations for quinceaneras, graduations, birthdays, and other important celebrations. Sending digital invites not only save on postage but reduce the risk of transmitting disease through the mail. Digital invites are also a great option to keep updated should you be able to host your celebration in-person rather than through a digital interface.
Celebrate safely by following the guidelines set by the CDC and WHO. There are many news outlets and individuals working to make face masks a political statement. In spite of this, medical professionals around the world are encouraging individuals to wear a face mask in public as well as practice social distancing.
If you’re able to host your celebration digitally, consider doing so! Facebook parties as well as group Zoom calls are a great way to connect with friends and family without risking the spread of COVID-19. These allow you to see your guests and communicate freely without risking contact or spreading illness between guests.
If you celebrating face-to-face, work to keep all of your guests safe with soap and space. Washing hands have become a ritual within our current social climate. Be sure to have hand sanitizer stations available for guests, as well as plenty of soap and disposable towels at any sinks. Sharing hand towels is not a great option right now, so replace traditional communal towels with disposable paper options when possible.
Another great option is limiting the number of seats per table. Typically, round tables at events seat six to eight different individuals. In an effort to maintain social distancing, place only four seats per round table instead. Try to space out or stagger seats on rectangular tables as well to add space between couples or families.
If possible, consider making events outdoors to allow for more air to circulate and space between guests to be made. Consider postponing events that would have larger attendance or require travel for guests. While nobody ever wants to wait to celebrate, it may be best to postpone bigger events. Weddings with larger parties, family reunions, even open houses for graduations can all be rescheduled.
It has to be the priority of hosts to make sure guests can attend and enjoy events without risking their personal wellbeing. If it is impossible to provide room for guests to social distance properly, or for attendees to maintain germ-free hygiene, it may be best to delay celebrating until the risk of COVID-19 has ceased.
Prioritize the health of your friends and family more than anything else in this season. It’s never fun to turn down a party, but making sure to care for yourself and those around you is the most important thing. COVID-19 will pass eventually, so reduce the risk of spread by being cautious in your celebrations today.